The 411 Food Fair

Carmen Kawanna, manager, 3rd left, with staff Caritina Torres, Briana Lugo, Ciera Arana, Michelle Serros, and Feli Robledo

McDonald's "Experience of the Future" opens in East Chicago

Contributed By:The 411 News

Self-order and pay kiosks, table service are featured

Imagine eating at the world’s number one fast food restaurant and a crew member comes to your table. “I hope you’re enjoying your meal. Can I get you anything else? Do you need more napkins and straws? Do you need more catsup?”

That’s the kind of service customers can depend on at the renovated McDonald’s in East Chicago’s Harbor section. Plus, the crew will bring the meal to your table.

McDonald’s restaurants across the country are getting an update, and the McDonald’s located at 1811 Columbus Drive is the most recent restaurant to complete the transformation. It is the very first “Experience of the Future” McDonald’s in northwest Indiana.

“We want to resemble the service given at a modern restaurant. Now our customers don’t have to go to the counter to order and we bring the food to them,” said manager Carmen Kawanna.

Customers can order and pay for their selections at self-order kiosks, pick up their order number tag and go to their table. A signal in the tag allows servers to locate the diner’s table.

When the city of East Chicago learned of the renovation, the city asked for renovations to the restaurant’s exterior, Kawanna said. “The city wanted it to look good and owner Rod Lubeznik agreed.” With a larger interior, more space was added to the dining area and kitchen. “We were so small and bumping into each other in the kitchen,” she said. Another nod to customer convenience, most of the restaurant’s seating is padded.

Lubeznik became a McDonald’s Owner-Operator in 1974; his family has been operating McDonald’s restaurants in northwest Indiana and Chicagoland since 1961. Rod opened his first restaurant in East Chicago in 1978 on Indianapolis Blvd. and second on Columbus Drive in 1982. Active in the communities that he operates restaurants, Lubeznik is also president of the Northwest Indiana McDonald’s Operator Coop.

Coming soon to the restaurant is Mobile Order & Pay, an online MacDonald’s smart phone application. Customers are notified when their order is ready and it is delivered to their car curbside, in the drive-thru or at the counter.

Story Posted:08/31/2017

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